A fact sheet published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates that more than 75,000 pedestrians were injured in traffic accidents in 2012. While there are many factors that have the potential to cause a pedestrian accident, one of the most prevalent is a driver’s inability to see pedestrians, particularly at night. With the shorter winter days in full swing, many people who walk as a significant part of their daily commute are doing do after sunset after work every day. While there is an inherent risk with walking at any time of day, there are certain steps that nighttime pedestrians can take to reduce their risk of being hit by a motor vehicle because the driver was unable to see them. These include:
- Carrying a flashlight or other device that emits light;
- Wearing retro-reflective clothing;
- Minimizing the among of times that you need to cross the street;
- Crossing the street only at designated crosswalks or at intersections; and
- Walking on well-lit streets with sidewalks, whenever possible.
Driver Negligence Can Strike Even Under the Best Circumstances
In some cases, drivers who hit pedestrians that they did not see may have done so due to some type of negligent behavior. Some examples of the kinds of negligent driver conduct that could cause a driver to fail to see a pedestrian includes distracted driving, speeding, failure to yield the right of way, or not wearing corrective eyewear. In these and other cases of negligence, pedestrian victims can often recover for their losses by filing a legal claim against the driver who hit them. Because of the complicated legal issues that have the potential to arise in a pedestrian accident case, victims should always discuss their options with an experienced Atlanta personal injury lawyer.
Pedestrian Accidents May Leave Victims With Significant Injuries
The unprotected human body is simply no match for a 4,000 pound vehicle. As a result, when collisions occur, the injuries that pedestrians can sustain can be extremely serious. In some cases, a pedestrian may be thrown a significant distance by a collision, potentially resulting in secondary injuries caused by contact with the ground or another vehicle. Some of the types of injuries that pedestrians commonly sustain when they are struck by motor vehicles include:
- Broken bones;
- Traumatic brain injuries;
- Spinal cord injuries; and
- Soft tissue injuries.
When pedestrians sustain these and other injuries in motor vehicle accident, their lives may be impacted in a variety of ways. There may be costs associated with medical treatment, lost income due to missed work, and they may experience a significant amount of physical pain and emotional suffering. In many instances, an experienced Atlanta pedestrian accident lawyer can help pedestrians who are injured in accidents caused by negligent drivers.